HOLLYWOOD—Lauralee Bell’s “Family Dinner” had an outrageously exciting and sensational webisode debut on Monday night. The beautiful actress, director, writer and producer did her best work thus far on the acclaimed and Webby-nominated series. Scott Martin’s technical and creative expertise also shined, as did their special guest-star Shirley Jones. Miss Jones, an AcademyÂ® Award winning actress was outstanding on the fifth episode. Surely she’ll be remembered next year when the Webby nominations are announced. Canyon News spoke with Miss Jones recently, who was very humble about her performance. “I don’t really know how I did, but I enjoyed it and had a great time,” said the Oscar winning actress. “Lauralee, Scott and the entire cast and crew were great to me. I flew in from doing two shows back east, and my manager had a car waiting for me at the airport, I arrived at Cravings on Sunset and we filmed it. It all went smoothly.”
Lauralee’s friend Shari Weidmann did a fantastic job as the waitress who was stunned to find such a dysfunctional clan in Cravings Restaurant. Shari added a lot more than just great acting and beauty to the web series. She also got her niece “American Idol” Jordin Sparks to appear on the show as well. Sparks was promoting her new perfume line. While everything came out smelling just great for the actors who make this series so entertaining. Emmy-winner Aaron Lustig is hilarious as the long suffering husband of Karen’s, while Dan Cortese played the exceptionally exacerbated family advisor with aplomb. When Shirley Jones appeared as the musical therapist, the scenes were elevated with her powerful skills as a thespian, and we can’t forget the gorgeous and talented rock star and actor Rick Springfield’s sensational performance.
“Family Dinner” was its normal dysfunctional and hysterical self. Added to it, was real star power, the likes of which Lauralee Bell is only able to bring onboard a series. Former guests include Hollywood’s funniest comedian Phyllis Diller, and AcademyÂ® Award winning actress Cloris Leachman. Bell has managed to elevate her web series to must see comedy on the Net. Since Oprah’s retiring next May, Karen needs to find another talk show to appear on. Shall I suggest Jerry Springer’s Show?
The “Red Hot Chili Peppers” drummer Chad Smith added a lot to the episode as well. Who knew he’d be so charismatic on camera? The show debuted on Monday night, but you can still see it and laugh along with the rest of us by going to funnyordie.com/videos/0f741a55dc/family-dinner-episode-.
“Family Dinner” belongs on cable or a network more than anything else out there. CBS’s “Two and a Half Men” may be the most popular sitcom right now. However, if Bell’s series lands on a network, we’ll all be talking about “Family Dinner” and not anything else on television. Lauralee Bell and Scott Martin have brought an exciting Internet sitcom to the public. It’s the best comedy I’ve seen since “Seinfeld.” The only difference is, “Seinfeld” took pride in being a show about nothing. “Family Dinner” is definitely a show about something. A family we have fallen in love with, with a mother, Karen, played by Bell, who is nuttier than Peg Bundy on “Married With Children” and a sidekick in actor Dan Cortese, who has Johnny Carson’s comedic timing and Cary Grant's good looks.
“Family Dinner” is a delicious series cooked up by Hollywood’s most talented and beautiful princess, Lauralee Bell.
Photographs Courtesy: Kathy Hutchins and Hutchins Photo Agency